Ikea to spend €1bn to tackle climate change

08 June by


Businesses are taking the lead over governments in the move towards sustainability.

Swedish furniture giant Ikea has announed it will spend €1bn (£735m) over the next five years to tackle climate change.

This is far more than many countries are doing and Ikea says if other firms follow suit, they can force down the price of energy from renewables.

Over the next five years, the company states it will spend €500m on wind power and €100m on solar.

They plan to make a further €400m, charitable donation to help developing countries likely to be worst hit by climate change.

The announcement comes as governments meeting at a UN conference are discussing targets on climate change way lower than scientists say is necessary to ensure a stable climate.

Ikea believes businesses must take a lead while politicians delay. Peter Agnefjall, its chief executive, said: “Climate change is one of the world’s biggest challenges and we need bold commitments and action to find a solution.

“That’s why we are going all in to transform our business, to ensure that it is fit for the future and we can have a positive impact.”

The firm plans for all its buildings be powered by renewables. All the lighting it sells will run on LEDs: the company says it will force down the price of the bulbs.

The group has invested €1.5bn in wind and solar since 2009, committing to own and operate 314 offsite wind turbines and installing 700,000 solar panels on its buildings.

The announcement follows other big business moves on climate chage;  Shell and BP, have called on governments to introduce a carbon price to force coal - out of the energy mix.

The Saudi oil minister has said he expects his country to switch from oil to solar in decades to come. Apple are thought to be developing an electric car and The chief executive of Unilever has called for much more ambitious targets from governments to drive investment in clean technology.

Some analysts believe actions such as these suggest that the long battle over climate change has reached a turning point.